Brazers are metal workers who join copper piping and apply coating to sensitive parts to protect the piping from corrosion. To launch yourself in a career as a brazer; an individual can start by completing an apprenticeship or enrolling in a trade school. In this article, we will look at the career prospects for brazer including their job description and additional responsibilities.
Job Profile of a Brazer
Brazers function in diverse settings that range from freelance settings to factories, but nearly two out of three work in factories (source: the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov)). Brazers work with metals that have extremely high melting points, only welders work with metals that have higher melting points. They employ dangerous raw materials necessitating the use of gloves and protective goggles as protection from getting burned. Brazers’ work is particularly challenging and has to exercise with exceptional care because they aim for accuracy in connecting copper pipes and applying coatings to protect them from corrosion. There is a strong demand for skilled brazers; however, a decrease of seven percent in the job market for brazers is projected between 2008 and 2018 due to mechanization of brazing. In 2008, brazers earned a median hourly wage of $16.13 (source: The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Additional Responsibilities of Brazers
Brazer’s work is similar to soldered; however, a brazer works with metals (e.g. copper) that have higher melting points. The task of a brazer commence after s/he know what are required in a connection or coating; the brazer has to scrub all the surfaces clean to prepare them for the application of heat. After a brazer has donned his/her mask and gloves, s/he works at aligning pieces together and covers everything with flux, a substance that helps protect the metals from oxidation. Thereafter, the brazer’s torch is turned on, and heat is applied to the metal that helps braze the pieces together before a copper coating is applied. Apart from the physical act of brazing, freelance brazers are required to make estimates and schedule projects.
The hardest part of brazing is getting accustomed to it, so it makes sense to start at an early age and chalk up valuable experience before throwing yourself into it. Brazing classes are offered by some high schools, specialized programs for brazing have been devised at various technical schools and community colleges. Enrolling for a formal training program in a technical school or community college will support an ambitious brazer at getting useful hands-on experience that will help them obtain a job immediately after they complete their training. Apprenticeship is another popular approach that many subscribe to en route at becoming a brazer.
Prospective brazers with no prior experience can join apprenticeship programs such as the ones provided by the United Association (UA), Union of Plumbers, Fitters, Welders and HVAC Service Technicians. In order to launch themselves into a successful career as a brazer, they want to join an apprenticeship that lasts for a lengthy period of five years; they will get paid even though they are learning the craft from experts (source: www.ua.org).
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